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Marshall Munetsi leaves Orlando Pirates for French outfit Stade Reims

16:09 IST 11/06/2019
Marshall Munetsi, Orlando Pirates, August 2018
The Zimbabwe international becomes a third Pirates player to leave for France in recent years after Kermit Erasmus and Lyle Foster

Orlando Pirates have officially announced the transfer of Marshall Munetsi to French outfit Stade de Reims

The news comes a few hours after Pirates administrative officer Floyd Mbele had denied the reports in an interview with Goal

The Buccaneers took to their official website to announce the deal on Tuesday afternoon, with the utility player expressing delight at finally getting the chance to move abroad.   

"First and foremost, I would like to thank the chairman and management for all the support they have given me ever since I arrived at the club," said Munetsi to the Pirates website. 

"I came here as a young boy but now I leave as a man. I would also like to thank the coaches, my teammates and most importantly the fans of this wonderful club for all the love and support they’ve shown me. 

"As I turn the page to a new chapter in my football career, I look forward to the new challenge this presents but as I move forward I can never forget my roots... Once a Pirate Always a Pirate!" 

The 22-year-old  joined Pirates from FC Cape Town in 2016, but the Soweto giants loaned him out to Baroka FC to gain experience and grow as a player. 

He then returned to the club after a series of impressive performances at Baroka, and he featured 24 times for the Buccaneers this past season. 

Munetsi had a love-hate relationship with the club's supporters this past season, but he never took his eyes off the ball as coach Micho Sredojevic continued to show faith in him. 

He is Pirates' third player to move to France in recent years, following in the footsteps of Kermit Erasmus, who left the club for Stade Rennes as well as Lyle Foster, who joined Monaco at the start of 2019.    

Munetsi is part of the Warriors squad that will take part in this year's Africa Cup of Nations

Munetsi's Zimbabwe have been drawn in Group A at the Africa Cup of Nations finals, which kicks off on June 21 in Egypt.

Zimbabwe will begin their Afcon campaign against Egypt in Cairo, before meeting Uganda and DR Congo as they look to reach the knockout stages.